Staff for The Guardian have reported that members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union at Southern, Merseyrail and Arriva Trains North are to conduct a 24-hour long strike on April 8. The strike, which will take place on the day of the Grand National, concerns a long-running dispute regarding the issue of staffing levels and the role of conductors. The date is of particular importance, with previous Grand National events supported by a strengthened train service and special timetables applied throughout the three day event at Aintree racecourse. One strike has already been held by RMT members from the three companies, with drivers from Merseyrail refusing to cross picket lines in support of colleagues. The industrial action has been called due to a lack of progress in talks surrounding plans to introduce driver-only trains in 2020.